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KIRK SPEAKS: THE STATE UNIVERSITY OF OHIO

Ferentz is just messing with us at this point.

NCAA Football: Minnesota at Iowa
“I know you’re jealous of my hair.”
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Kirk Ferentz literally mentioned somebody from the 1940s this week. He’s never allowed to say he has a bad memory ever again. Here’s the transcript and here’s the depth chart:

  • Brandon Snyder is off this again and not gonna play against Ohio State: “We won't see him this week, no.”
  • There’s some shuffling on the offensive line: “I think it's fair to [we’ll switch Ross Reynolds and Keegan Render], we've kind of got six guys right now I think that are in that category. Yeah, you can see more of that, or, you know, see it again.”
  • BUTLER BACK: “He's such a quality young man and he's a guy that I think gives us some energy and his leadership; we don't have a lot of seniors in that huddle. So you get another senior with good eyes stepping in that huddle.”
  • He likes the defensive line rotation: “Yeah, I think so. I think so. We saw Anthony in the fourth quarter had fresh legs. He wasn't all drained. Because you're going against guys that are typically 300-plus pound guys and they are coming at you every play.”
  • Matt Vandenberg is over Josh Jackson at punt returner.
  • The punter rotation is probably gonna stay, I think.
  • Captains are Josey Jewell, Sean Welsh, James Daniels, and Kevin Ward. That’s right, Oxford comma - @ me.

The Brian Ferentz Incident

Kirk came out ahead of it and said all the right things. He called it “unprofessional” and “inappropriate” in his opening statement before receiving another question about it. Brian met with Gary Barta yesterday and the Big Ten is going to file a report. Iowa “will abide by whatever everybody feels is appropriate.”

This back and forth cracked me up:

Q. Gary is officially his boss because --

COACH FERENTZ: Direct supervisor --

Q. -- in your case, you're an advisory position to this in some ways?

COACH FERENTZ: I still coach here. I'm still the head coach. If any of our coaches I think act in a way that's inappropriate, and believe me, I've been guilty of that, too. It has to be addressed. It's just something you can't do.

We’ll have more as it develops.

OHIO STATE IS GOOD THEY HAVE ALWAYS BEEN GOOD

I'm guessing if you checked any coaches' record in the Big Ten that didn't coach at Ohio State, they might have the same concern [of little success against OSU].

Paul Brown, go right down the list, whoever has coached there. They have had really good teams. Some years better than others.

Paul Brown coached at Ohio State for literally three years in the 1940s to an 18-8-1 record. Kirk is never allowed to say he has a bad memory ever again.

He did indicate that for Iowa to have a chance, it’s probably going to look a lot like the Penn State game:

We had some really good football games with them. We had some that weren't so good. I do know this: If we are going to have a chance to win, we are going to have to be there in the fourth quarter and that's going to be easier said than done. We are going to have to really fight our tails off to get there.

[...]

But it's just -- we've got to understand that, you know, we've got to be ready to play football or it could get turned real fast. They have done that to a lot of people this year already where they have put 60-some points on the board and it can happen quick. It starts with how you think. You've got to go in there, try to give yourself the best chance to be successful and then most importantly, you've got to pay the price here in the week and then you've got to compete at game time.

It really is remarkable how good Ohio State’s been this year - they’re second in the nation in scoring offense and top 20 in scoring defense. I don’t think Iowa has a defense like Nebraska but things could get turned. I don’t expect them to get turned toooo bad - Iowa’s never allowed over 40 points at home since 2000.

The way Ferentz answered the question about the alternate uniforms is a little too sarcastic for my liking:

Q. What do you think of the uniforms? Do you like them?

COACH FERENTZ: You know, I couldn't sleep. Because we showed that video -- you guys have probably seen it now. It came out, right? I couldn't sleep Saturday night. I was so excited. And it was even better to see the helmets. We wore the helmets in practice today. I was trying to concentrate on what we were doing but I just kept looking at those helmets. Those are awesome.

I mean, we get it, you’re not hip to this stuff. But the kids like them. Let them like them. But, he does have a reason the continuity of Iowa’s uniform (which I do think is among the best in sports) since his arrival:

I mean this in all sincerity: That's reverence for what Coach Fry did for this program. We went back to the original; the ones that he brought, put us in.

I remember like it was yesterday reading in back -- they had this Sports Illustrated -- get myself in trouble here. Do people still read magazines? I don't get Sports Illustrated anymore. You guys remember that, older guys in the room? I still remember Coach Fry saying, "We may not be very good when we snap the ball, but we're good coming out of the huddle." I remember that like it was yesterday. I had no idea who Hayden Fry was or who the Iowa Hawkeyes were. But I remember reading that quote because I'm from Pittsburgh.

I mean, that was the psychology in his mind was just try to change things and straight ahead, let's go.

I think they look pretty good in these alternates. Maybe the psychology of looking good coming out of the huddle will help Iowa upset the Buckeyes.